The jewelry hallmark is what describes the item's metal content as well as the quality thereof. If you happen to own a piece of precious jewelry, your accessory should have a jewelry hallmark on it. It is usually found on gold, platinum or silver jewelry pieces and will detail the karat content of the metal. Some jewelry hallmarks will also show the maker's mark or country of origin on the item. To sum it up, the jewelry hallmark is the identifying mark on the piece of jewelry which details the quality of the item and often cites where it came from.
Jewelry hallmarks are important in the jewelry world for a few different reasons. First, they signify what the item is made of which helps the wearer to determine the metal content of the jewelry piece that they have on. It is important to note that although hallmarks are used to identify the metal content, this does not in and of itself dictate the true authenticity of the item. Jewelry hallmarks can be easily duplicated and the jewelry item can be sold as something other than what it really is. With that said, it does provide a way for the purchaser of an item to look at a gold necklace or bracelet on sale at a jewelry store, turn the item over and determine what the metal content supposedly is, simply by looking at it.
Another reason for having jewelry hallmarks on rings, necklaces, bracelets and other beautiful jewelry pieces is to show the maker's mark on the item. If you decide that you want to buy a ring designed by a specific jewelry designer, you will most likely want the item to have the jewelry hallmark on it which shows the maker's mark as well. Not every piece will have a maker's mark, or even a hallmark for that matter, but many items do which provides the buyer with some shred of evidence to go by when trying to purchase a specific item.
Hallmarks are a way for the jewelry owner to determine the period in which they were crafted. There are a few different ways to determine the time period factor and the hallmark is one such way. If you are searching for a jewelry item from a certain time period, a jewelry hallmark which shows such information is probably very important to you.
These are other prominent inscriptions on your ornament. Stamp of BIS, i.e a triangle, means that the jewellery has been assessed and stamped by the authority and hence you can be sure of the purity. BIS also stamps the year of hallmarking the jewellery. Jewellers also carry their personal hallmark which includes year of make and purity of the metal. However, look for the BIS stamp as it is widely accepted.
The BIS hallmark also carries the jeweller's stamp to indicate that the jeweller is BIS certified. BIS certification is very cheap compared with what you pay for the precious metal. It is around Rs. 2 per g of gold.
The hallmark is comprised of five elements
The marking is done either using punches or a laser marking machine. Its purpose is to safeguard the consumers. The meaning of this mark is that the assayers (an independent body – assay office) guarantee the legal standard of fineness or purity. This mark applies for both buying and selling of ornaments and jewels.
Hallmarking is a reliable certification. But its implementation is not complete in all respects. Fashionable jewelry is sometimes less reliably hallmarked. So be cautious. While buying gold check it yourself or have it checked by a professional. LASTLY, I would like to point out that I am not a jeweler and the above guidelines are not provided out any expertise